Don’t Go It Alone!
Last Friday, I wrote about winding up the old and getting ready for the new. My parting paragraphs went as follows:
“Know Before You Go and Take Someone With You. . . And finally, take someone with you. I’m fortunate to have Jen Sakowski as my AWI partner. While I’m the big picture woman; she’s the highly organized-bit by bit-detail oriented genius who makes sense of my this-is-where-I-want-us-to-be-when-we-know-we-have-arrived! Without her, the big picture would be just that; a whole piece of cloth – uncut and unfinished!
One last thing for the last blog post of 2018; exercise caution when choosing a companion for the journey. She may not be a business partner in a legal sense; but she ought be someone who compliments you, your vision, personality and skill set. She ought be a woman of integrity who shares much the same values you do. And your relationship ought be build on openness and honesty. Otherwise the journey will be rough and bumpy and the 2 of you may not make it together to the end of the line.”
A Pleasant Phone Call. . .
Yesterday morning I phoned the auditor’s office in our courthouse. I know the delightful woman who answered the phone and before putting me on hold wished me a happy new year. I briefly heard some light chatter among the office staff as the auditor cheerfully answered my call. While it was a short pleasant conversation, it caught my attention; thus providing the content for this follow up post to the last Friday in an old year!
Our auditor’s office is an all female staff. It occurred to me as I listened to the light banter in the background that perhaps one of the reasons women work outside the home is for socialization. After all, it’s known that females are created with a need (or desire) for conversation and companionship. We like getting together and sharing with each other. And working in a mature all female environment would fulfill that need for most women. Please note that I use the qualifier “mature” because some all female work environments are anything but pleasant or enjoyable. . . but that’s for another post down the road!
I realize that there are almost as many reasons why women work outside their homes as there are women who do so; but I choose to focus on one aspect that had never occurred to me before yesterday!
The ‘What‘ of The Business Journey!
In last Friday’s post, I noted the importance of not going the road alone. Take a companion and outlined the kind of companion we ought consider. Here’s my suggestions to consider:
- A person who compliments you, your personality and skill set,
- A person who shares your vision, dreams and desires for the future,
- A woman (or man) of integrity who shares much the same values you do,
- A person who is a good listener and whose feedback and input you value,
- And a relationship built on openness and honesty,
- A person with whom you have a mutual level of trust.
But what of the woman who starts her own business? What about the solopreneur who works without the benefit of a companion; at least in the beginning stages of business development. What about the woman in direct sales whose upline is up and away from her?
If “companionship” is an important part of a business woman’s journey; especially a Christian woman in business trying to live out her faith in and through her business, how can we help her find companionship when there seems to be none around?
Ask and It Will Be Given ~ Seek and You Will Find!
I suggest the following steps for the woman seeking a companion for the business journey:
- Are you a Christian business woman? If so, then PRAY. Determine the qualities you want in a business companion and then ask for what you want. Be patient while Papa GOD brings that person to your attention. As a matter of fact, I suggest every business woman follow this step; at least the part about determining the qualities you look for in business companionship,
- Do you belong to COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS? If not, consider joining one or two. Do your research first to determine which are most likely to have members who have the qualities you are looking for in a companion,
- Active in a CHURCH? More and more church groups are recognizing the value of ministry to marketplace leaders. In our case, Christian women in business. Talk to your church leadership; share the qualities you are looking for and why you want a companion to share the business journey with you,
- NETWORKING. The obvious business choice is networking organizations. While we are ‘networking’ anywhere we meet and greet others; there are groups which focus exclusively on business networking. Find them, get input from those who are currently a member as well as those who are former members, then test them out for yourself. (Linda’s recommendation: find one that focuses on true relationship-building rather than just handing out lots of business cards. Business is much more than a fist-full of business cards. It’s about building relationships, and when looking for a business companion; that’s what you want. . . a relationship!).
So Is That All There Is?
Simple answer is NO! There’s a myriad number of places to search for a business companion. Social media groups are another way to ferret out folks who may be the one you are looking for. Even while on vacation or traveling for any reason. You’d be amazed at the folks one meets while waiting in the terminal for the next plane to where you are headed. In fact, the perfect companion may be sitting next to you in the middle seat of the coach section on your flight!
The Importance of Companionship
I started this post with the intention of saying what I believe is the importance of companionship on the business journey. I got sidetracked; so will have to wait until the next Friday blog.
In the meantime, consider my thoughts and suggestions. You may find they are the perfect start point for a new and hopefully exciting year of business success! I surely hope so. . .
Linda S. Fitzgerald, M.S.Ed, CEO & Visionary Partner
A Women’s Place Network, Inc. dba
Affiliated Women International
Building a Community of Christian Business Women
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